NAIROBI, KENYA: The National Youth Service has been ordered to suspend the operations of its commuter buses in Nairobi.
The National Assembly Committee on Labour and Social Welfare said the 27 NYS buses plying various routes had led to conflict of interest and threatened to portray the service in a negative light.
The committee on Thursday asked Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs Cabinet Secretary Margaret Kobia why her ministry had requested Sh500 million in emergency funds to buy 50 more buses when there was no emergency.
Prof Kobia explained that there was goodwill from the public, which needed leverage against matatus during the rainy season.
The National Youth Service (NYS) deployed about 27 buses in Nairobi last month to ease movement in the city.
Director General Richard Ndubai said the move would save commuters from the high fares charged by matatus, especially when it rains.
Routes that immediately benefited from the NYS buses are Kibera, Githurai, Mwiki, Mukuru kwa Njenga, Dandora, Kariobangi and Kawangware.
“We have witnessed how residents of Nairobi walk long distances to reach their destinations whenever it rains. Some of them just prefer to walk rather than pay the high fares matatus charge. We shall do what we can to alleviate the suffering,” he said.
The move has been opposed by the matatu owners with the association’s chairman Simon Kimutai saying NYS should first ensure that the buses complied with public service vehicle regulations.